The 25 Best Ghost Movies of All Time, Ranked Good To Best

Best Ghost Movies
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Here are the top 25 best ghost movies of all time

Ghosts are the classic monster. The often unseen force is a hallmark of myths, legends, and things that go bump in the night in almost every culture. The lack of control the living have over the supernatural make ghosts, poltergeists, and otherworldly beings the perfect horror movie villain. Here are the top 25 ghost movies of all time.

25. 1408 

A creepy Stephen King short story about a skeptical author of supernatural phenomena was a breakout hit in 2007. John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson star in this haunted hotel feature. Directed by Mikael Håfström.

24. It Follows

The 2014 indie David Robert Mitchell flick about a girl terrorized by an unseen supernatural force after a sexual encounter has reached millennial cult status in the past four years. Clearly a metaphor for hook-up culture, It Follows is full of hip, creepy imagery.

23. Oculus

Horror genius Mike Flanagan (Absentia, Hush, and Gerald's Game) tells the story of a haunted antique mirror and the curse it holds over a family. Oculus takes an everyday object and turns it into a total nightmare.

22. Drag Me To Hell

Sam Raimi of Evil Dead fame gets back to his supernatural horror roots 2009's Drag Me To Hell. When a loan officer rejects a woman's request to extend her mortgage, she becomes the victim of a supernatural curse in this horror metaphor for the 2008 recession and housing market collapse.

21. Shutter (2004)

A hit-and-run gone bad gets a supernatural twist in this classic Thai ghost story about a photographer who is haunted by the ghost of a young girl. Skip the American remake and go for the much-creepier original directed by Banjong Pisanthanakun and Parkpoom Wongpoom.

20. Crimson Peak

Crimson Peak took everyone by surprise in 2015 with it's stunning imagery and unique storyline about an author who moves into his family's decaying manor. This gothic ghost masterpiece by Guillermo del Toro (with a twist), is a must-see.

19. The Fog

John Carpenter's 1980 horror staple is a milestone for every horror fan. Carpenter tells the story of a seaside town experiencing mysterious supernatural phenomena leading up the celebration of its centenary. This gem brought the campfire ghost story to the big screen.

18. The Wailing

This South Korean horror smash hit, directed by Na Hong-jin tells the story of a small rural town ravaged by a mysterious supernatural affliction, murder, and numerous deaths when a stranger arrives.

17. The Grudge

Remakes usually can't compete with the original. However, the 2004 North American remake of the Japanese feature Jun-on is just as good. The American J-horror fasciation reached its apex with this sinister tale about a supernatural curse leftover from death. Directed by Takashi Shimizu, who directed the original Jun-on series, The Grudge features the infamously creepy crawling girl and meowing little boy.

16. A Tale of 2 Sisters

Remade as The Uninvited in 2009, the original South Korean film is a much darker and all around better take on the story of a two sisters, their new stepmother and their haunted house. Mixing classic ghost elements of K-horror and the evil stepmother troupe, director Kim Jee-woon creates a disturbing portaging of a dysfunctional family.

15. Grave Encounters

One of the best found-footage movies created at the height of the craze in 2011, Grave Encounters mixes faux documentary and ghost hunting with psychological horror. When the cast of a ghost hunting show explores a former asylum, it ends up being their last episode. Directed by the Canadian duo The Vicious Brothers.

14. Mama

Andy Muschietti directed this feature length film based on his short film of the same name. Mama tells the story of two orphaned sisters who disappear into the woods the day their parents die. When their uncle and his girlfriend finally find them in an abandoned cabin and bring them home. they find something else has followed them.

13. The Sixth Sense

No ghost movie list would be complete without the original twist ending horror flick. Director M. Night Shyamalan has gotten a lot of flack from both audiences and critics in recent years. Nothing he's done can top his 1999 breakout hit that gave us "I see dead people."

12. Candyman

Often mistaken as a slasher, Candyman is actually an urban ghost story that has bled into childhood sleepover lore since its release in 1992. Director Bernard Rose's take on Clive Barker's story is full of creepy images of urban decay. Don't say his name three times!

11. Dead Silence

This 2007 flick was originally a box office bomb but has gained a cult following due to the success of director James Wan. Wan, the modern-day master of the supernatural takes the already creepy ventriloquist and somehow makes it even more terrifying in this visually appealing frightful romp.

10. Ghostbusters

There's no better movie to led off the top ten. This one really needs no introduction. The 1984 comedy directed by Ivan Reitman (Stripes, Kindergarten Cop, and Twins) about a ghost hunting company in New York City is a classic and pop culture icon. The opening chords of the theme song alone is enough to get a group dancing. Also, shout to Slimer and Ecto Cooler.

9. The Woman in Black

A post-Harry Potter Daniel Radcliffe stars in his Hammer produced period piece directed by James Watkins (The Descent 2, Eden Lake). This visually stunning haunted house movie is a modern-day masterpiece.

8. The Others

This ghost story with possibly the top twist-you-never-saw-coming never gets old. Nicole Kidman stars as a mother whose children suffer from a severe allergy to the sun. Take creepy, pale British kids, World War II, a big, dark house, top it off with fog, and you've got an excellent ghost story. Director Alejandro Amenábar does not skimp on the scares.

7. The Amityville Horror

The ultimate haunted house movie capitalized on the "based on a true story" concept and never looked back. Despite the sketchy origins of the story, the original 1979 feature is a classic that has spawned countless sequels and remakes. The impact of the Stuart Rosenberg original can't be denied.

6. Paranormal Activity

The biggest found-footage movie since The Blair Witch started the horror trend people either love or hate when it hit theaters in 2009. Using the then-new concept of social media and viral Internet marketing, the story a young couple with a demonic force following them had no choice but to be a hit. The movie that cost only $11,000 to make started both a trend and a franchise. The success of the film has made director Oren Peli a to-go horror guy.

5. The Conjuring

The first entry in the immensely popular franchise was billed as one of the scariest movies of all time. Based on cases from the archives of famed paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, The Conjuring tells the story of family plagued by supernatural beings in their farmhouse. Another James Wan directed feature scared the pants off audiences and launched a series that horror fans can't get enough of.

4. Insidious

The 2010 supernatural odyssey about a young boy in a supernatural coma and the ghostly visions that plague his family is destined to be a horror classic. The horror dream team of director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell create a delightfully terrifying narrative full of clever jump scares and one-of-a-kind monsters.

3. Beetlejuice

Easily the best horror/comedy of all time. Tim Burton's take on the afterlife is a classic and a childhood staple of weird kids born after 1989. "The ghost with the most" is still just as good today as it was almost thirty years ago.

2. The Shining

Another Stephen King story about troubled writer and his family in a snowed-in hotel is one of the scariest films ever. The 1980 Stanley Kubrick supernatural/psychological horror film is one of the greatest pieces of cinema ever. Incredible performances by Jack Nicholas and Shelley Duvall mixed with Kubrick's vision of King's story creates a disturbing narrative of madness and isolation.

1. Poltergeist

With the monster in its title, the 1982 Tobe Hooper classic was the obvious choice for the number one spot. From its release, several sequels, a supposed curse on the cast, and late 90's afternoons of being played on TBS, Poltergeist has aged remarkably well and continues to scare almost forty years later.

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